Adult Daughter won’t see a GP for Mental Health Issues
Thank you so much for sharing this here. We’re so sorry to hear about your daughter’s emotional pain. We can hear you’re a really caring parent and your concerns come from such a loving and supportive place, but it’s also a painful time for everyone involved. We can imagine having you with her while you drove around was a really important support, and shows her she is cared for.
I’m sure we’ll hear from our amazing community soon, but in the meantime, we wanted to share a couple of pages with you in case they interest you:
- When someone you care about won’t seek support
- 10 ways to be there for someone
- If you’re thinking about what kind of support might help her, you can have a look into a few options....
The Beyond Blue counsellors are here for you if you’d like to talk this through on 1300 22 4636, or via online chat. It is so important that you look after yourself during these times and they can help you, or just be there if you want to talk.
We can hear you’ve worried at times about harm that could be caused to herself or others. If you’re ever concerned about her safety, or that of her partner, it’s important to know that you can call 000 as this is an emergency.
We'd also recommend encouraging her to have a look into safety planning. The Beyond Now suicide safety planning app might be a good place to start. You can read about how it works and where to download it here: https://www.beyondblue.org.au/get-support/beyondnow-suicide-safety-planning . She could even call Lifeline on 13 11 14 and compete it together with one of their counsellors over the phone if that seemed like a good option.
Thanks again for sharing here. We really appreciate your kindness and openness in sharing and offering your support here on the forums, so we hope you can be kind to yourself also through this time.
It must be really difficult to see your daughter going through this, you sound like a really caring and supportive person in her life - she's lucky to have you.
I think the system you offered her to call you is really good and it's a chance for her to pause and make a decision to manage her mental health with your support. In her calmer and self reflective moments I would still maybe suggest she seek professional help, as ultimately this will be the best option for her.
But I understand when people are against it this isn't always easy. Does she have any close friends you could ask about this?
Another way of supporting her wellbeing would be to encourage healthy habits and coping strategies. Something as simple as going for a walk each day (or another form of exercise) can really help regulate our system. Or perhaps she's interested in exploring mindfulness? There are some good guided tracks on youtube for beginners - this is a really great skill to help relieve stress and calm the mind.
Journaling is another healthy outlet that can help - this is something I do regularly and it always helps me process my emotions and calms my stress. I just do a few pages a few times a week. Or pick it up when I'm really overwhelmed to get the thoughts out of my head.
Hope something here helps, let us know how everything is going when you can.
Thank you for opening up to us on the forum! I just want to commend you for how supportive you are being. It’s extremely hard to see someone you love going through any kind of pain let alone knowing how to be there for them. It’s clear that you are a good listener and that you daughter feels comfortable and encouraged to open up to you when she is in need.
As a daughter that suffered with mental health issues, the most unhelpful thing for me was when my parents would get worked up when I was worked up and stress going to the doctors during that time. In the moments when I was really going through it, I knew that I needed to see a doctor but I was already very emotional, very sensitive, embarrassed and scared for what was to come. Basically, timing was everything and choosing to bring up that topic in that moment was completely disheartening and unhelpful for me.
Has she ever raised that conversation with you or her partner since you last discussed it? If she’s come to you in times that she needed support, do you feel confident that she will come to you to discuss the possibility of seeing a doctor? In those times, it might be helpful to reassure her that these concerns she is having around seeking help are completely valid and that they will be taken into account when discussing potential paths that she can take in her journey. Maybe remind her that regardless of how tough it may become, you are there for her and will continue to support her.
In the meantime, are there any activities that you both once did together or any shared interests/activities that you could do together?
All the best!
I was diagnosed at 17 like your daughter, I have grown up in western NSW and they told us that they would drop me as soon as I became an adult as the system changes so there was not much point.
I don’t know if this is a similar situation to yours but I thought I would reply as my relationship with my mum has been important in my recovery.
I have OCD, Deppression and an ED.
My relationship with my mum started to fall apart after my diagnosis, the psychiatrist made me feel very uncomfortable and to be honest I was lying at lot at that time. I was so scared. I wanted to tell my mum everything but couldn’t understand it myself and was so embarrassed. I took the medication my mum gave me but then began to feel suicidal and convinced myself it was the meds. I refused meds for two years after that.
maybe if you do make suggestions about getting help, talk with your daughter about different support to last time. Repeating experiences with services that have failed to recognise your needs feels hopeless.
Maybe you could research options together, talk about if the thought of meds or Therapy make her uncomfortable and if she gets upset just stay with her listen to her or if necessary change the topic.
This may not help, but I know how much it means when your mum keeps showing up for you long after you thought she should or would. I am so thankful for my mum and you are doing the right thing just by being there for her.
best wishes sea turtle
Hello Charleigh, your daughter may be frightened to see the doctor, simply because it's a professional sitting behind a desk and asking questions, which may make herfeel uncomfortable.
If however you were able to contact Kids Helpline 100 55 1800 by phone, web chat or online and discuss this current situation then someone will be in contact and probably the best part is that, although they are trained and qualified, they dress in casual clothes and any discussion can happen, not by someone behind a desk, but just casually, in her bedroom, lounge room, kitchen or the room where she feels more comfortable, which may be more appropriate for her.
You can see a psychologist without requiring a referral from a GP but it is more expensive. GPs can offer a mental health care plan, which allows medicare to reimburse you for some of the cost. Doing this may "desensitise" her to the stigma associated with seeing a mental health professional.
I remember when I was due to see a pscyhiatrist from Julia Farr many years ago about my anxiety / depression as a result of a head injury. I was freaking out. He turned out to be the nicest guy and ended up diagnosing me which essentially helped me recover. The mind play silly tricks sometimes.
Half the battle with coping with mental health issues is the unecessary shame/guilt we feel for having the problem in the first place. You wouldn't feel guilty or embarrassed for catching a cold or getting the flu. Yet for some reason we feel ashamed for having something much more serious go wrong with us, often through no fault of our own. No one in their right mind would choose to have a mental health issue. So maybe pointing this out might help.
Hope this helps.